Critical Minerals Course





Next Course Date: April 5, 2023 

Location: Potomac Institute Ballston Headquarters (Arlington, VA)

 ·       Early Bird Registration Deadline - February 24th   
 Early Bird Tuition $1,300 
·       Regular Registration Deadline - March 24th  
  Regular Tuition $1,500



Secure access to critical minerals and rare earth elements are foundational to achieving broad national security objectives and the manufacturing of Department of Defense weapons systems. There are many unique challenges and opportunities for the companies to be aware of as the DoD works to implement White House direction on defense related issues.  These issues include industrial base policy, supply chain security, requirements definition, and Service-specific programmatic acquisition. 
This course will explore the national, departmental, and industrial base considerations for companies trying to navigate the critical mineral and rare earth element ecosystem with specific emphasis on practical non-plussed discussions from real practitioners that know how to balance policy with a profit and loss statement.  This course will be led by an esteemed set of instructors with considerable experience in this field.  Our instructors will help participants understand the importance of critical minerals and rare earth elements as they relate to national security. 
The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies invites early to mid-career professionals with an interest in understanding the importance of the challenges and opportunities as they relate to critical minerals and rare earth elements.  This course is perfect for industry, government, and academic professionals alike with a shared goal of understanding the intersection of policy, science and technology. 

Session Descriptions


General Policy Issues

This session will introduce the broad course topic, what critical minerals are, why they are important to national security, and provide an overview of the Executive and Legislative actions to drive more investment into developing a secure supply chain for critical minerals and rare earth elements.  

Speaker: Mrs. Sarah Mineiro

What Drives DOD Requirements for Critical Minerals?

Together we will explore what is driving the need for critical minerals and rare earth elements to support our national security objectives and specifically our DoD weapons platforms.   This session will provide senior-level perspectives on how the DoD prioritizes and incentivizes access to and refinement of these scarce resources.  Lastly, it will provide participants with the opportunity to discuss how OSD elements implement the guidance across the Department and Services.  

Speaker: Honorable Al Shaffer

Service Acquisition Perspectives and Supply Chain Concerns

This session will provide Service specific perspectives regarding the programmatic implementation of higher headquarters guidance as it relates to critical minerals.  As Services consider how to interpret and implement guidance through the lens of specific programmatic acquisition decisions, how much do acquisition officials care about critical minerals?  We will also dive into how we can prevent and address supply chain security throughout the acquisition process.  

Speaker: Dr. Alexis Lasselle Ross

Challenges and Opportunities with Critical Minerals

The capstone session will be facilitated by Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Industrial Base Resilience, Ms. Halimah Najieb-Locke.  She will provide perspectives on how the DoD is currently investing in the development of critical minerals supply chains.   

Speaker: DASDE Halimah Najieb-Locke